Congratulations, Post

Olivia Milford and Jordan Sacher

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No need to roast Post: After his two-year break from dropping new music, Post Malone released his second album, beerbongs & bentleys, at the end of April. This album reached No. 1 on the Billboard Hot 100 charts; it was Malone’s first number one. As with his first album, Stoney (2016), this newest release emphasizes the artist’s eclectic style.

Unlike that of many other rappers and pop artists, Malone’s music defies categorization. The most-recognized song on the album, titled “Rockstar” and featuring rapper 21 Savage, was released as a single last September to give his fans a taste of what was to come. The song is a slow rap song that is upbeat and has a catchy tune. 21 Savage is introduced to appeal to a rap-loving audience, and Malone balances the song to appeal to pop-lovers.

Photo by @postmalone on Instagram
Post Malone performing on stage.

Just as the album mixes slow, dark songs with upbeat pop songs, so too does it juxtapose the personal and the political. Malone meditates on his personal connection to political issues in the song “Paranoid.” When he sings, “Sometimes feel like I got no friends / can’t trust a soul like I’m Snowden,” he reveals not only the struggle of feeling lonely, but also the lack of trust he has for his friends and the government.

Malone chooses to centralize his personal feelings in some of the album’s other songs. His song “Stay” is mainly acoustic, allowing Malone to show off his sometimes hidden, yet very smooth, singing voice. He sings, “But don’t break your back for me / I’ll put you out of your misery,” suggesting an angry and resentful feeling towards a relationship he has. He expresses the feeling of being involved in a one-sided relationship centered around alcohol, and as a result not being able to fully commit to someone else.

Malone experiments with some humor and irony on this album as well. One of his songs, titled “Zack and Codeine,” is meant to be a spin-off of the title of the very famous Disney Channel show The Suite Life of Zack and Cody. The song is an upbeat and fun song that references partying in a hotel lobby, which was the main idea of the hit TV show. Malone’s use of humor adds some relief to the dark and serious topics he sings about.

With the title beerbongs & bentleys, listeners might expect an album about the topics that are frequently favorites of artists like Swae Lee, 21 Savage, Ty Dolla $ign, Nicki Minaj, G Eazy and rapper YG, who have all collaborated with Malone on this album. But Malone has used his unique musical style to defy the expectation that music has to be put into a category; instead, he produces music the way he wants, and that has proven to be a recipe for success.